Pollies snap up freebies
SPORTS-LOVING politicians have received thousands of dollars worth of free tickets to some of the country’s biggest events while on a break from Canberra.
Government documents reveal federal MPs are being showered with freebies by sporting and cultural bodies which has seen them secure plum seats at the tennis, cricket and major concerts.
Australia’s dismal performance in the cricket failed to deter our federal MPs with Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton spotted at the Sydney Cricket Ground for the first day of the New Year’s Test.
Assistant Minister for Home Affairs Linda Reynolds accepted two passes to a Big Bash match at the WACA ground, while fellow WA MP Steve Irons was at Perth’s Optus Stadium for Australia’s six-wicket loss in the first One-Day International.
With the Australian Open due to kick off tomorrow, MPs are expected to flock to Melbourne to catch some of the action at Rod Laver Arena.
Labor backbenchers Matt Keogh, Patrick Gorman and Josh Wilson have had their tennis fix at the Hopman Cup final where they were wined and dined in a corporate box last week. As a junior player he may have defeated Mark Philippoussis in doubles, but Treasurer Josh Frydenberg remained in the commentary box during last week’s Kooyong Classic.
Minister for Veterans’ Affairs Darren Chester was given two tickets to Wellington Phoenix’s 1-1 draw with Melbourne Victory on December 28, courtesy of Telstra.
Labor Senator Anthony Chisholm received four free tickets to watch the Socceroos and Korea face off in an international friendly at Suncorp Stadium courtesy of online bookmaker Bet365. As expected, Sports Minister Bridget McKenzie has spent her summer at some of Australia’s best sporting grounds including the MCG for the Boxing Day Test. Senator Mc- Kenzie tweeted that the cricket was responsible for “strong economic, cultural and social links between India and Australia’’.
Musical theatre fan Christopher Pyne received two free tickets to see Mamma Mia in Adelaide valued at $220. Labor’s communications spokeswoman Michelle Rowlands mixed high and low culture with free tickets to see Bell Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar at the Sydney Opera House as well as a double pass to the filming of the My Kitchen Rules semi-final.
NSW Liberal Trent Zimmerman was shouted free tickets to Taylor Swift courtesy of Tabcorp.
Federal MPs and senators have 28 days to update the register after receiving gifts such as free tickets.
Peter Dutton, Linda Reynolds, Steve Irons and Josh Frydenberg.